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National Library of Medicine Exhibitions: Fall 2017

The Exhibition Program at the National Library of Medicine strives to promote greater understanding and awareness of how the past informs the present and can shape the future.

About the Exhibition

"English poet and playwright William Shakespeare created characters that are among the richest and most humanly recognizable in all of literature. Yet Shakespeare understood human personality in the terms available to his age—that of the now-discarded theory of the four bodily humors—blood, yellow bile, black bile, and phlegm. These four humors were understood to define people’s physical and mental health, and to determine individual’s personality, as well. "And there's the Humor of it": Shakespeare and the Four Humors explores the language of the four humors and their influence in Shakespeare’s plays."

To learn more about the exhibition, visit the website.


Library Resources


"And there's the humor of it": Shakespeare and the Four Humors

(October 23, 2017 - December 2, 2017)


Bodies in Play: Shakespeare's Depiction of Illness
October 24, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. 

Marcia Eppich-Harris, Ph.D., Department of English
Diane Prenatt, Ph.D., Department of English

Two English Department faculty members gave a presentation in conjunction with the NLM exhibit. The presentation explored medicine during Shakespeare's lifetime and looked at the portrayal of illness within his work.

Interested in watching the presentation? Access it through MUShare, our institutional repository. You can also find the paper Dr.Eppich-Harris wrote for the presentation there. 


"And there's the humor of it": Shakespeare and the Four Humors posters displayed in the Evans Center atrium. 

The presentation took place in Lecture Hall 2 on October 24th at 7 p.m.

Diane Prenatt, Ph.D. discussing the history of medicine.

Marcia Eppich-Harris, Ph.D. discussing the War of the Roses.

Department of English faculty members, Marcia Eppich-Harris, Ph.D., and Diane Prenatt, Ph.D., pose for a photo after their presentation.  

"And there's the humor of it": Shakespeare and the Four Humors posters set up on the first floor of the Mother Theresea Hackelmeier Memorial Library. 

The library put the complete works of Shakespeare and all the Shakespeare related DVDs on display with the exhibition. 

More library resources related to the traveling exhibition displayed near the Circulation Desk.